way too extravagant and not even roses

veilchen(5b southern Maine)May 4, 2008

Anyone grow tree peonies? I planted 4 last year and to my delight 3 of them already have flower buds coming up this year. I also grow a few herbaceous peonies.

From my experience (client has two mature tree peonies in her garden) when the peonies are in full bloom, we inevitably get heavy rain, which ruins the flowers and makes them flop even worse than usual, despite supports, on the herb. peonies. A huge tree peony bloom is a special treat to look forward to, and it's a shame that every year they end up looking like a wad of dirty tissue due to rain.

So I asked dh to order me some peony umbrellas from Cricket Hill (the only source I could fine online, including e-bay). $184 got me 8 of them.

I feel so shallow. Oh well, we can say we're spending part of our economic stimulus check, right? And Mother's Day is coming up.

Here is a link that might be useful: they are kinda pretty though

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AnneCecilia z5 MI

Shallow? Nah...no one who grows tree peonies could be considered "shallow." They are such an investment and require such patience. And then to see the bloom time over and ruined due to weather, well a $20.00 umbrella seems sensible to me. Actually, the lady who got me hooked on tree peonies uses umbrellas, too, for shade so they don't fry if the weather should turn unusually hot. That made me plant mine on the east side of my house so I could count on afternoon shade. My problem has been that I've had to be out of town two years in a row at peony bloom time and left when my two peonies were in bud to come home to petals on the ground. Talk about a real disappointment. This year, I am stayin' put come hellorhighwater so I can enjoy the blooms. (And maybe I should order two umbrellas in case it rains, LOL!)

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 1:01PM
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veilchen(5b southern Maine)

Thanks for making me feel better, a-c. Tree peony bloom time should not be missed and I am glad you'll be home this year for it. Almost as bad as missing the June flush of OGRs (horrors!).

Sun is v. prominent in my garden and it was hard to find part-sun spots. Unfortunately, the best part sun/shade spots receive afternoon sun instead of a.m. I have one tree peony in a.m. sun, but it is sharing this rare ideal spot in my garden with a cut-leaf j. maple, which is also perfect for this spot, and eventually I will have to move one or the other. The shadier spots in my yard are produced by a Norway maple, which I can't grow anything under due to dense shade and root competition. The rest could definitely be classified as "full sun".

I was talking with d.h. today and saying how I could use the umbrellas in lots of other situations, such as shading recent transplants, maybe sheltering some roses that I have that inevitably get the wet tissue effect from too much rain, to even protecting my delphiniums from rain (but the umbrellas aren't tall enough).

Later this month my garden will be strewn with these umbrellas, I will take a photo soon as I figure out how to use my new camera properly.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 8:17PM
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harryshoe zone6 eastern Pennsylvania

Hmmmmm...maybe I could get one for SdlM.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2008 at 10:15AM
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That is too funny! And a good idea.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2008 at 12:29PM
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Terry Crawford

I love the umbrellas, Pagan! I have 4 tree peonies; 3 pink ones and a orange/yellow baby. Mine are getting ready to bloom in the next couple of weeks and you're absolutely right...it always rains buckets right when they open up. I feel I must order an umbrella or two.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2008 at 7:17PM
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Terry Crawford

Sorry, Veilchen; I was reading a post from Pagan and got cross-wired. I'm in the middle of a kitchen remodel and have been inhaling way too much dust, I guess. Not fun, I can tell you!

    Bookmark   May 5, 2008 at 7:21PM
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Terry Crawford

I got my umbrellas today; they are gorgeous! They are so pretty and delicate I'm afraid to put them outside in the wind (sigh).

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 7:39PM
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iowa_jade(C 5b H 6)

I have one TP; Phoenix White - Feng Dan Bai, a single white, that is supposed to get 5' in eight years that could use an umbrella. The petals close when it is not sunny. This is it's first bloom having survived as a two leaf wonder for several years. It is suposed to rain today. We will see how it holds up. The other bunch (7) I am able to stretch the fleece from the grape wires to the wabbit fence.

It is a wonder that we go through so much for such fleeting beauty. This is the second year I should get a decent shock & awe type bloom fest from my babies.

Congrats on the umbrellas, let us know how you like them.


    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 9:49AM
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Wish I could grow them in my area of So. Cal. They look so pretty. I have the same problem with rain spoiling all my big camellias and I drape big clear dropcloths over them. When the sun comes out, I have to run and uncover them so the leaves don't burn. Burnt leaves hang on the plant for 3 or more years. I used to drag the 5 gallon pots under the eaves, but now they are in 15 gallon cans or bigger.

The umbrellas sound like a good idea to me. Who wants to wait all year and see the nice fat buds turn to mushballs?

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 10:03PM
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veilchen(5b southern Maine)

Well, I am already using one of the umbrellas over a new-ly transplanted peony. It's been pretty sunny all week and I figured the baby peony would appreciate some shade.

My tree peony buds still have a ways to go before they open.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2008 at 6:11AM
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Oh boy, I could do with a few of those myself. I only have one gorgeous pink tree Peony but I would Love them for some of the roses but most of all my large pots of geraniums. In a thunderstorm today, we put two chairs either side of my two huge geraniums (which we only brought out of the greenhouse this morning) then covered them with a wide sheet of wood. No rain damage, Halalujia!
Bur I do believe those pretty umbrellas would have been a lot more asthetically pleasing! :)

Pauline - Vancouver Island

    Bookmark   May 29, 2008 at 1:00AM
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carla17(Z7 NC)

I'm not sure these people have tree peonies but they have regular peonies. song sparrow.com
Sometimes shrubs/bushes are pricey.


    Bookmark   May 29, 2008 at 8:34AM
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